Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Agriculture is Life

Some days it's just very good to listen, be encouraged and get pumped to continue on the paths we've been called to in life.  Today was one of those days for us.

Farm Credit Corporation, our agricultural lending institution, conducts 10 forums across Canada each year and we attended the one in Red Deer.  Unfortunately we missed the morning session presented by Amanda Lang, CBC's senior business analyst where she talked about innovation.  Her remarks were referred to by people throughout the rest of the day and we hope to hear her some other time.  Loading a B-train full of grain and sending it out took first priority on this day!

The afternoon speakers were fantastic - so happy that we got to hear them.   First up was Martin Latullipe, captain of Canada's 2001 world university hockey team (he was injured while playing), now working as a motivational speaker.  This clip from his website says it all:

"Martin delivers a high-energy, theatrical performance characterized by humor, lots of fun, and great takeaways. He inspires and motivates. After listening to Martin’s presentation, audiences will never see their personal impact in the same way. They will immediately begin looking in the mirror of success and start creating legacy in their personal and professional lives."

(from martintullipe.com)

His examples were profound stories of how people make an impact, realize potential and create legacy. And he was such a cheerleader for agriculture but I guess that's what motivational speakers do!
Here are a few of my notes:
Our response determines our level of success.
3 seeds to keep winning:
1.  Focus on the dream, not the doubt.  (This is the challenging one for me - and by the jab in my side when Martin spoke those words, someone else in this partnership knows it too!)
2.  Choose to give what you do and how you do it, great purpose.  Create a legacy in other people's lives. 
3.  Celebrate progress, make it your measure of success.  Focus on the 3% chance of making it, not the 97% chance of failing, based on a true story he told.  Believe in miracles and live in the moment!

The second afternoon speaker was General Rick Hillier, former Chief of Defence Staff and overseer of the Canadian mission in Afghanistan.  He spoke about leadership and shared many stories from his military career, as well as some including his wife.  The crowd definitely related to him and emotions in the room went from hilarious laughter to sobering tears-in-our-eyes as he talked about the men and women serving our country around the world.  

(from generalhillier.com)

Things to remember:

Communicating is hardest with those closest to you.  (Ain't that the truth?!)
Leaders are all about people.  
Inspire your people to bring body and mind to work.  
Draw inspiration from the people around you so you can keep going.  
Practice perpetual optimism and a passion for what you do.  It will move others to do and be better.  
Be inspired by recognizing the hero models right around you.  As a leader, share their passion with others.

I'm going to write more about FCC's "Agriculture More Than Ever" campaign next year.  


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